Let me breakdown this Novak Djokovic-Australian Open mess

Novak, here's what you get.

Novak, here’s what you get.
Image: Getty Images

Let’s start just by talking about Novak Djokovic’s abilities. He’s very, very good at hitting fuzzy, yellow, bouncy tennis balls. It can hit them very hard, yet it can also hit them very softly. It makes people clap for joy at how it hits the tennis balls. Wins very big trophies. Hitting fuzzy, yellow, bouncy balls so well made him a very rich man.

Well done, Novak!

Unfortunately, being really good at tennis doesn’t stimulate your immune system to produce the antibodies that fight the coronavirus. Getting the vaccine does. (So ​​too take COVID, which is something Djokovic has done at least twice, perhaps, but more on that later.) Many nations have rules in place to make sure that people who come to their cities, hotels and restaurants they are not it will spread the virus. Australian officials stopped Djokovic at immigration when he arrived to play at this year’s Australian Open and are determined his medical exemption was invalid.

And this is where our story resumes.

Djokovic has a hearing on Monday to determine whether the nine-time Australian Open champion (a record) can stay in Australia and play, and keep in mind that Australia has had some of the strictest COVID rules any Democrat-led government has. imposed on its citizens.

Djokovic’s lawyers say so the medical exemption he asked to enter is based on a positive PCR test for coronavirus on December 16, the BBC reported. And if that’s the case, how tennis writer Ben Rothenberg he points out on his twitter page, there are huge red flags. The first is that the deadline for applying for an exemption was 10 December. The second is that on December 16, several social media posts have Djokovic posing with children indoors and without masks at an event. On the 17th, Djokovic tweeted photos of himself receiving his stamp from his home country Serbia during an in-person ceremony.

Since Djokovic was not vaccinated, according to the facts in his admission case, the only way to apply for a medical exemption was to catch COVID within six months of entry. So while he was planning to play the tournament, which kicks off on January 17th, how did he plan to qualify for entry?

Have you just tested positive and could apply for exemption, but have you not isolated or taken other measures to prevent its spread?

None of this makes sense.

There are a lot of questions about the exemption you have applied for, and it may or may not be due. That the people who told him they would let him play in the tournament are the same people who determine which travelers can enter the country. Djokovic’s lawyers say they have received permission to enter the country by an immigration officer and, if so, the hearing will determine that the determination was based on factual information.

And in a wild twist, you can really watch the audition through this audience connection.

The ATP’s top player also hosted a three-site super spreader tournament in the Balkans when the pandemic started. So here’s a player on airplanes and in hotels, who greets people without a mask and indoors and admits that he has become covid twice. Should Australia let him in? This is a nation that has been extremely conservative about the conditions for diffusion, and there are many Australians who have followed the rules, are exhausted from the blocks and are watching this and thinking that perhaps they should have taken tennis lessons more seriously.

You can’t just walk to the edge with a positive PCR test and explain that you always have COVID, so is everything okay?

Why on earth would Australia let in a reckless, twice infected, antitivaxxer who clearly isn’t interested in following the rules, and most likely has played freewheeling with exemption protocols so that he can hit a yellow ball with a racket ?

And now, great, Djokovic has raised the international crowd of freedom for all. British ghoul Nigel Farage tweeted:

“I am talking to the Djokovic family and it is clear that Tennis Australia, in line with the law of the state of Victoria, has allowed Novak to come to Australia as he had evidence of a positive PCR test for the past 6 months. He was then arrested, his phone and wallet taken. ”

Right, because Djokovic chose to stay and argue his case in front of a judge, so he has a room at the airport. Nations have laws and when you enter sovereign countries, you have to agree to follow their rules. You would think a Brexit movement leader would get the whole sovereign nation thing. Many on social media have welcomed Farage into campaigning for migrant rights, but of course this only applies to one celebrity and not the thousands of people fleeing oppression and poverty seeking to enter the UK or states. United every year. Wait until he learns about conditions on the southern border.

But I’m digressing.

The bottom line is that Djokovic isn’t all that different from anyone else. He chose not to get vaccinated. A lot of people have done this, and some of them have real medical reasons that they can’t. Choosing not to get vaccinated has consequences. You may not be able to work in certain environments as an unvaccinated person, or enter certain restaurants, or travel freely across borders.

Nobody is doing this to Djokovic. We are in a pandemic and how we adapt to that is often uncomfortable. Look at the debate around schools, no one would choose to keep children at home in normal conditions, but in a pandemic there are very difficult considerations at stake.

But no one can decide what is reasonable for them is also reasonable for all the people they interact with, especially at the borders of a nation. So Djokovic must decide between vaccination and his quest to become the greatest champion of his era against Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, or hope that his name, stature and timely positive PCR results will allow him to enter the nations. of the Grand Slam.

Or as Nadal says: “He made his own decisions and everyone is free to make their own decisions, but then there are consequences”


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